CompTIA is one of the larger IT certifiers in the world. Over 2.5 million IT professionals have received certifications from CompTIA. According to Business News Daily’s survey, CompTIA’s Linux+ certification ranked among the top Linux-related certifications that employers were seeking.

Currently, CompTIA has five distinct categories of certifications:

  • Core
  • Infrastructure
  • Cybersecurity
  • Data & Analytics
  • Professional

The Linux+ certification falls under the Infrastructure category (along with Cloud+ and Server+) and is perfect for early-career systems administrators who want to work with Linux systems.

Linux+ basics

Linux+ is a newer certification. CompTIA started offering it in April of 2019. It is designed as a junior-level certification for those starting out in an IT infrastructure career. Specifically, one would be working on Linux systems.

Green background with three Linux brand penguins sitting in a row.
CompTIA recommends at least 12 months of hands-on experience before taking the exam.

Who gets certified?

According to CompTIA, common jobs that benefit from the Linux+ certification are:

  • System Administrators
  • Linux Administrators
  • Network Administrators
  • Junior DevOps Support Engineers
  • Linux Engineers
  • Web Admins/Developers

Since Linux has been around since modern computing began, professionals with open source skills are highly sought after. The Linux Foundation reported that 69% of hiring managers are more interested in hiring someone with a certification vs. someone without.

CompTIA reported the average annual salary of a Linux+ certificate holder was $77,360. They also reported salaries for other job titles that commonly use a Linux+ certification from both the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Glassdoor. :

Exam details 

The original exam launched as version XK0-004 in April of 2019. A new version, XK0-005 launched in July of 2022. As of January 16, 2023, the 005 version will be the only one available and is only offered in English.

  • 90-minute test length
  • Maximum of 90 questions
  • Multiple choice and performance-based
  • Passing score: 720 (on a scale of 100 to 900)

While Linux+ is considered a junior level certification, CompTIA still recommends 12 months of hands-on experience with Linux systems before taking the exam. They also recommend getting certified with A+, Network+ or Server+ before attempting the Linux+ exam.

The exam covers five domain areas:

  • Hardware and System Configuration
  • Systems Operation and Maintenance
  • Security
  • Linux Troubleshooting and Diagnostics
  • Automation and Scripting

Testing is done through Pearson Vue and can be completed online or in person.